8 Young people shot, 3 dead in South Bend over past two months

SOUTH BEND, Ind. - Eight young people have been shot in the past two months, three killed causing a growing concern about violence among our young people.

January 25th Alejandro Tinoco and his girlfriend, Jazmin Conlee were shot. He died at the hospital, Conlee died days later. Two young men were later arrested in connection with their murders.

February 26th Chris Simril, a Washington High School Senior was shot four times dead at Walkerfield Park. The shooting happened in broad daylight. Investigators never released a motive. Simril's killer is still on the run.

March 31st Symone Berry, a Penn High School Senior was shot in the neck during a dance at the Century Center. Berry has since been released from the hospital. A 20-year-old was also shot and injured. There are no suspects in connection with the shooting.

April 3rd an 18-year-old identified by friends as Marcus Gilliam was shot in the arm on North Brookfield. There have been no arrests. Gilliam is still in the hospital according to those close to him but is expected to be okay.

April 5th 1 17 and 19-year-old were both shot at California and Allen Streets. The 17-year-old is in critical condition and according to friends on life support. The 19-year-old survived and is listed in stable connection. Police are not sure who shot the two young men.

The outbreak of gun violence among young people has many in the city of South Bend outraged.

"My friend Marcus was shot the other day on the north side and it's just sad. The violence, it needs to stop," Diont Calhoun said Friday.

Calhoun, a Washington High School graduate, now 20-years old admits he use to be on the streets.

"With the stuff I was doing I was either on the path of being dead or in jail." 

Calhoun was jailed after getting caught inside a stolen vehicle. While in jail he said he made a conscious decision to change his life.

"I wanted something better for myself." 

And now, with this recent rash of shootings he wants better for his community.

"For all the kids out there, get an education, go to school, listen to your mom and dad and you will be something some day you won't be shot or six feet below."

I talked with dozens of people Friday about the violence, everyone wants it to be safer and to change but no one had a solution.

Many blamed parents, educators, police, neighbors and even media for the violence. Neighbor looking out for neighbor seemed to be the only solution. Although some suggested that anger management and conflict resolution need to be taught better in our public school system.

If you have an idea on how to stop the violence among young people e-mail me at [email protected] or message me on Facebook. Your ideas may be presented to city leaders or educators. Together lets work together to end violence among our next generations.

"I just want it to stop, I'm proud of my city, it's a great place to live the violence is just senseless," Calhoun said.

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